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A. B. The University of Nanking, 1914. 


Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the 

Degree of 








SUPERVISION RY 3<lp. q£L^-^ 5=5^ 


THE DEGREE OF Td A^^^tC^ fl Cl^Lo 

In Charge of Thesis 

Head of Department 

Recommendation concurred in* 


Final Examination* 

*Required for doctor's degree but not for master's 



Chapter I. Early American Policy in China. 

Chapter II. Foreign Aggressions in China and Its Effects 
upon America's Chinese Policy. 

Chapter III. Hay's Chinese Policy. 

Chapter IV. Conclusion. 



All intelligent students of the history of America's inter- 
course with China must be impressed with the fact that the policy 
followed by the government of the United States in dealing with 
Chinese questions has passed through two stages in its development. 
The first stage covered a period of about one hundred years from the 
arrival of the ship The Empress of China at Canton in 1784 to the 
proclamation of Secretary Hay's first circular note in 1899. The 
second stage, opening a new era in the history of American diplom- 
acy in China, began with the twentieth century. It was in this 
stage that the American government put its Chinese policy into a 
definite shape and exerted unusual effort to maintain it. With this 
policy the present paper will deal. 

The policy that the United States adopted in its early 
dealings with China was the traditional foreign policy pronounced 
by Washington. It was based upon the principle of peaceful commer- 
cial relations and the avoidance of entangling alliances. The early 
American diplomats and consuls in China did what they could in pro- 
tecting lawful American merchants and citizens in that country. To 
open China's doors to the world's trade was the aim of the United 
States which was in common with the European Powers engaged in the 
Far Eastern trade. To co-operate with them in obtaining the aim 
not by force but by peaceful means was the policy of the United 
States. Its attitude towards China was marked with peace and 


prudence, and evidently it was passive. But it began to change in 
the later part of the last century. 

The foreign policy of a nation is a thing everchanging. 
Territorial expansion, commercial and industrial development of the 
nation or a new international situation to which it must adapt it- 
self often calls for the reshaping oi its foreign policy. The annex- 
ation of the Hawaiian groups and the Philippine Islands brought the 
United States into closer relations with the Far East. America's 
Chinese trade grew to such magnitude and importance that the American 
government could not but pay constant attention to the interests of 
the Americans in China which were impaired by other Europeans. All 
these led to the change of America's policy in China in the closing 
years of the nineteenth century. The American government could no 
longer assume the passive attitude. It had to resort to new measures 
in keeping China's door open,- a door which certain Powers attempted 
to shut against others. 

What were the developments of the affairs in the Far East, 
especially in China that made the United States change its attitude 
towards Chinese questions? Why did Secretary Hay announce the policy 
known by his name? How did he try to carry it out to its fullest 
extent and to defend it? In order to throw some light upon these 
questions let us examine the history of America's intercourse with 
China and those of the general history of the Far East. 

Before 1844 there was no treaty relation between China and 
the United States, all relations being purely commercial. Since the 
first American vessels arrived at Canton in 1784, American ships 
visited that port from year to year by way of the Atlantic and 


Indian Ooeans or by way of Cape „orn. in 1768 tho ship Columbia, 
laden with seal and other skins in the vicinity of Cape ..orn, reach- 
ed the port and there bartered for tea. This was the starting point 
of the fur trade which later became almost an American monopoly in 
China. The trade grew so fast that in 1789 there were fifteen Amer- 
ican vessels at Canton. Two years later about 427,000"*" seal skins 
were imported to China where there was always an insatiable market 
for the fur. "The profits of this trade were very large amounting 


in successive voyages to one thousand percent every second year." 
Yet we must keep in mind that the fur traffic was one of the items 
of the Chinese trade. 

Although the trade was of considerable magnitude, it was 
under terribly exposed conditions. Many American merchants called 
the attention of the government to the necessity of better protec- 
tion. John Jay, secretary for foreign affairs of the Continental 
Congress, recommended to the Congress on January 20, 1786, that the 
United States should appoint consuls to the ports in Cnina. Congress 
consented to his proposal and !!r. Shaw was made consul at Canton. 
The first American consul to China according to the custom of the 
time established himself in Macao where all the European representa- 
tives to China resided. There he took up the task of protecting 
American interests. His successors saw the American commerce with 
China going on without any disturbance until the war of 1812 which 

1 Pitkin, A Statistical View of the United States, p. 149 
and Appendix VII. 

2 foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 100. 


suspended the trade entirely. When the war was over the trade was 
resume! and it showed unusual activity. The American government and 
its representatives in China never failed in affording encouragement 
and protection to this trade. 

The European Powers and their representatives were equally 
energetic in protecting their commercial interests in China, however 
ruptures "between the Europeans and the native government spasmodic- 
ally broke out on account of the exclusive policy of the Manchu 
government. "The Manchus were on account of the smallness of their 
number in the midst of the vast empire, compelled to adopt stringent 
measures to preserve this conquest. For fearing that foreigners 
should he tempted to snatch their prey from them, they have carefully 
closed the parts of China, against them, thinking thus to secure 
themselves from ambitious attempts from without." 4 Accordingly the 
Manchu government adhered firmly to its policy of seclusion which 
was conflicting with the policies of the Powers that sought commer- 
cial expansion in the empire. It was the British that first attempt- 
ed to break down the "Chinese wall". In 1834 the British government 
sent Lord flapier to China to negotiate a treaty of commerce. The 
Manchu government refused to open negotiations with him and ordered 
him to leave Macao. Upon his disregarding this order, the former 
stopped the British trade with Canton. British warships bombarded 
the fort near the port. A truce was agreed upon by both the local 

3 Johnson, America's Foreign Relati ons , Vol. I, p. 458. 

4 Hue, The Chinese empire, p. 124. 

authorities of the city and the british, and the trade was renewed. 
Lord Uapier waited at Macao for further instructions from the home 


government. A war between China and Great britain seemed imminent. 

Mr. Shillarber was then iimerican consul at Canton. He 
sent a detailed report of the situation in China to the department 
of state, suggesting that the united States might ally herself with 
Great Britain or take independent action in showing force formidable 
enough to make the Chinese government concede America's demands as 
to sharing in whatever privileges might be granted to the British. 
The United States government did not manifest its attitude towards 
this proposal because the British did not resort to force against 
China though the conduct of the Manchu government justified war. 

The British did not declare war against China until the 

Manchu government resolved to stamp out the opium trade. The trade 

to the British government was a source of revenue. During the five 

years before the Opium War Great Britain and her Indian possessions 

had drawn from the Chinese empire thirty to thirty-five millions 

of dollars in gold and silver and forty to forty -five millions of 


dollars of teas, raw silk, etc., in exchange for the drug. The 
Manchu court sent a commissioner to Canton to see to the abolishment 
of the trade. The commissioner wrested from the residents at the 
port upwards of 29 t 000 chests of opium valued at more than ten mil- 
lions of dollars. lie caused all the drug to be burned, and it was 

5 Johnson, America's Foreign Relations, Vol. I, p. 463. 

6 Doc. No. 40, House Ex. Docs. 26th Congress, 1st Sess. 
Vol. II, 1859-40. 

7 ibid. 


spark to tinder. The British government iramedi ately took up arms 
against China. The war known as the Opium V.'ar was brought to an end 
by the conclusion of peace of Nanking in 1642. The treaty of Nanking 
was signed on August 29th in the same year. It stipulated that the 
ports of Canton, Amoy , Foo-chow Kinpo , end Shanghai were to be opened 
to foreign trade and residence, that HongKong was ceded to Great 
Britain, and that future intercourse between the two nations was to 
be conducted on terms of equality. 

The United States did not participate in this war but its 
representative was shrewd enough to share the fruits of the victory 
gained by the British. As soon as he learned that the treaty in ques- 
tion would include provisions for new tariff and trade regulations, 
Commodore Kearny, keeping a squadron on Chinese water during the time 
of the war, addressed a communication to the governcr of Canton, 
asking that American citizens should enjoy the same privileges as the 
British, that is to say, the principle of the most-favored-nation 
clause should be included in the treaty. He received from the local 
authority the assurance that the United States should have whatever 
trade concessions which were to be made to Great Britain. He not 
only asserted America's rights in China but also secured an open 
door therein for all nations on equal terms. His communication 
marked the starting point of treaty relations between China and the 
United States. 

The signature of the Treaty of Hanking prompted the Amer- 
ican government to take measures for establishing treaty relations 

8 Johnson, America's Foreign Relation, Vol. I, p. 464. 


with China. On December 30. 1042, ^resident Tyler sent a special 
me86age to Congress then in session, recommending that a mission 
was to be dispatched to China to negotiate a treaty of commerce. 
Congress made an appropriation of v '40 ,000 for the mission and Caleb 
Cushing, a representative from Massachusetts , was appointed on Marct 
8, 1845, envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to China. 
The commissioner, his secretaries, and attaches, were conveyed to 
the empire on a squadron of four warships. 

The principal objects of this mission were explicitly 


stated in the letter of instructions prepared by Secretary Webster. 
They may be summed up as these: first, the government of the United 
States did not aim at territorial aggrandizement or aggression; 
second, it and its representatives in China would not encourage or 
protect American citizens who were found violating well known laws 
of China regulating trade; third, it would insist upon intercourse 
on equal terms; and fourth, a treaty of trade was to be made. "Let 
it be just. Let there be no unfair advantage on either side." 10 
Friendship and justice constituted the spirit of the mission. 

Mr. Cushing and his suite arrived at Macao February 24, 
1844, and established the American legation in a palace of a former 
Portuguese governor. He addressed a communication to the viceroy 
of the two Kwang provinces announcing the intention and purpose of 
his mission and his desire to deliver the President's letter to the 

9 Webster's Works, Vol. II, pp. 467, 469. 

10 president's letter to Emperor of China, Senate Doc. 138, 
28th Cong., 2nd Sess., pp. 1, 8. 


Kmperor. In reply the viceroy asked Mm to stay at Macao and to 
wait for a commissioner sent by the Peking government to take up 
the matter of treaty negotiation. The commissioner Tsiyeng arrived 
at Canton June 16, and five days later opened negotiations with Mr. 
Cushing at the Portuguese settlement. As a result of the negotia- 
tions, a treaty of commerce was signed on July 3. When the main 
object of the mission was obtained, Mr. Cushing entrusted the Pres- 
ident's letter to Tsiyeng and returned to America." 1 "' 1 ' 

Throughout the course of hit negotiations with the govern- 
ment of China, Mr. Cushing adhered to the principles set forth in 
Mr. Webster's letter of instructions and to the principle later 
known as that of equal opportunity. These principles were embodied 
in the treaty of 1844. In order tc see how Mr. Cushing worked out 
these principles into the treaty let us examine its main provisions. 

For the purpose of protecting the American's rights in 

China the treaty provided that "citizens of the United States who 

may commit any crime in China shall be subject to be tried and 

punished only by the consul or other public functionary of the 

United States thereto authorized according to the laws of the United 

States"; and that "all questions in regard to rights whether 
of property or person, arising between citizens of the United States 
in China, shall be subject to the jurisdiction of and regulated by 
the authority of their own government In other words, 

11 Moore, A digest of international Law, Vol.V, pp. 418, 420. 

12,13 Malloy, Treaties and Conventions between the United 
States and the other Powers, Vol. I, pp. 187, 202, 203. 


in criminal oases the offender was to be disposed of by his own 
government, while civil cases between the Chinese and the Americans 
were to be adjusted by the joint action of the Chinese and American 
authorities. The principle of extraterritoriality had been in- 
cluded in the Treaty of Nanking by the British. Mr. Cushing follow- 
ed the example, because his conviction was that the United States 
ought not to concede to any foreign states under any circumstances, 

jurisdiction over the life and liberty of any citizen of the United 


States, unless that foreign state be a Christian nation. 

As an example, I will cite a case during the Chino- 
Japanese War in order to show how the American government made use 
of the principle of extraterritoriality. Two Japanese charged as 
spies were arrested in the French concession in Shanghai. The 
French consul handed the Japanese over to the American consul and 
the latter had them kept in the American custody. The Chinese 
government demanded their surrender. As to this, the American 
consul asked for instruction from his home government. Secretary 
Graham thought that these Japanese were not entitled to the extra- 
territorial privilege and that they should be delivered to the 
Chinese authorities. These spies were handed over and executed 
by the Chinese government. Thus we see that the American govern- 
ment did not abuse the privilege secured by Mr. Cushing. 

Further than affording protection to Americans' rights 
in China the American government aimed at the protection of 
America's lawful commerce in that country. In regard to the opium 

Cited in Foster, American diplomacy in the Orient, p. 88 


trade, legalized by the treaty of Nanking, the treaty of 1844 pro- 
vided that "Citizens of the United States who shall attempt to trade 
in opium or any other contraband articles shall be subjeot to be 

dealt with by the Chinese government without being entitled to any 


oountenance or protection from that of the United States" The 
American government has held this attitude towards that trade up to 
the present time. In 1858 Mr. Reed was instructed to say to the 
Chinese government that "the United States would not seek for its 
citizens the legal establishment of the opium trade nor would it 
uphold them in any attempt to violate the laws of China by the intro- 
duction of that article into the country". 10 By the treaty of 1880 

no citizen of the United States was permitted to import opium into 


any of the open ports of China. In this respect the principle 
of American diplomacy in China was based upon humanity and it was 
different from the British policy in China which had mercenary 
motives behind it. 

But the American and the British policies in China had one 
point in common, that was the idea of equal opportunity. In the 
supplementary treaty of commerce and navigation concluded between 
the British and the Chinese governments in the year 1843, the most- 
favored-nation clause was for the first time introduced. Queen 

Malloy, Treaties and Conventions between the United 
States and the other Powers, Vol.1, p. 202. 

16 Cited in Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 120. 
1 7 

Malloy, Treaties and Conventions between the United 
States and the other Powers, Vol. I, p. 239. 


Victoria held thiit "equal fa*or should be shown to the industry and 
commercial enterprise of all nations" in China, lir . pushing 
agreed with this idea and introduced the most-i'avorcsd-nati on clause 
in the treaty of 1844. 

Twelve years after the signature of the first treaty be- 
tween the two nations, another treaty was concluded. It was the 
outcome of the second Anglo-Chinese war. About the year 1854 the 
British government wished to have the Treaty of Hanking revised but 
the Manchu government refused to take up the matter of the revision 
of the treaty with the British commissioner. The British government 
at last appealed to force in order to bring the Manchu government 
to terms and declared war upon China in 1856 on the ground that 
the English flag was insulted in the incident of the Arrow lorcha. 
The British captured Canton and got ready for a campaign to the 
north of China. France joined Great Britain. 

Dr. Parker, the American representative in China, was in 

favor of the coercive measure of the English and the French but 

the policy of his home government was peaceful. Secretary Marcy 

instructed him that "The British government evidently have objects 

beyond those contemplated by the United States and we ought not 

be drawn along with it however anxious it may be for our co- 

operation", and the United States would rather have its repre- 
sentative and naval officer in China to do what was required for 


Victoria's speech quoted by Mr, Gushing cited in Moore, 
A Digest of International Law, Vol. V, p. 418. 

19 Moore, international Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 4£2. 


the defense of American citizens and the protection of their proper- 
ty without being included in the British quarrel or producing any 


serious disturbance in its amicable relations with China. u Such 
was the nature of American policy in China at the time of the second 
Anglo-Chinese war. Since this policy was not in accordance with 
barker's views he resigned. Mr. Reed succeeded him as minister to 
China in 1857. 

Mr. Reed was instructed that he should aid his English 

and i-rench colleagues to attain the object of the revision of the 

treaties signed after the Opium War. He was to co-operate peacefully 

with his colleagues because his home government held that the united 

States was not at war with the government of China nor did it seek 

any other purpose than those of lawful commerce and the protection 


of the lives and property of its citizens. Clinging to this 
policy he withheld from any hostile action against China. 

The allied forces of Great Britain and France pushed their 
way to Tien Tsien and the Manchu government was impelled to open 
negotiations concerning the revision of the treaties. There Mr. 
Reed went and entered upon negotiations with the Chinese commission- 
ers as to the revision of the Treaty of 1844. As a result, Reed's 
Treaty was concluded between China and the United States at the 
same time that treaties between China and Russia, France and Great 
Britain were signed. The general features of Reed's Treaty were 
similar to the other four treaties. The treaty consisted of 

Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 230. 
Moore, International Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 424. 


concessions: (1) as to diplomatic privileges such as residence of 
American minister at Peking and direct access to the imperial govern- 
ment through Chung-ti -Yamen; (2) as to privileges of trade and 
travel; and (3) as to religious toleration on Chinese Christians. 

When the Manchu government was humiliated to yield to 
these demands of the foreigners, it was engaged in ^uelling a re- 
bellion rising from within. The rebellion known as Tai Ping rebel- 
lion aroused in one way or another the interests of the United 
States. The leader of the rebellion Kung Hsiu Chuan knew an Amer- 
ican missionary in Canton, the Rev. J. J. Roberts, and got from him 
some ideas of ChrUstianity . The corruption of the Manchu govern- 
ment and the bread riot resulting from a famine encouraged him to 
start a gigantic movement against the existing dynasty. The Tai 
Pings for a time seemed to be able to overthrow the Manchu govern- 
ment. The American government instructed Mr. Mclane.its commissionei 
to China, that "Should the revolutionary movement now in progress 
in China be successful and the political power of the country pass 
into other hands, you will, at your discretion, recognize the govern- 
ment de facto and treat it as the existing government of the 

country". He did investigate the insurgent court at Hanking 
and found nothing promising in it. Therefore he did not give the 
Tai Pings any political recognition. Later on the American minis- 
ters to China joined their European colleagues in the policy of 
protecting the treaty ports against the invasion of the Tai Pings. 

22 Senate Ex. Doc. 39, 36 Cong., 1st Sess. 


An American gentleman, Mr. Frederick T, Ward, organized a Chinese 
army under command of European officers ana fought against the Tai 

Pings. The army was later known as "Ever Victory Army" and played 


a considerable part in repressing the rebellion. 

In the year 1861, when the rebellion waB at its zenith, 
Anson Burlingame was commissioned to China. With a view of famil- 
iarizing himself with the general condition of the Europeans and 
the state of the American interests in China, he spent a few months 
in visiting the ports in the empire. Then he advanced northward 
and installed himself in the American legation in Peking which was 
opened to diplomatic residence in accordance with the conventions 
secured by the British and the French one year before. He came 
into contact with Prince Kung, then the head of the Board of Foreign 
Affairs, called Chung-li-yamen, already referred to elsewhere, and 
won his confidence. With frankness and sincerity he attracted his 
European colleagues. Thus his career in China made an auspicious 

A review of his correspondence with his home government 
will reveal the principle of his action when in China. On the way 
to Peking he wrote to Secretary Seward saying "If the treaty powers 
could agree among themselves to the neutrality of China and togeth- 
er secure order in the treaty ports and give their moral support 

to that party in China in favor of order, the interests of humanity 

would be subserved". It is very plain that his policy was to 

Johnson, America's Foreign Relations , Vol.1, p. 473. 
24 Diplomatic Correspondence 1864, Part I, p. 859. 


secure co-operation among the representatives of the Powers in China 
and he was successful at this point. 

He succeeded in "bringing these representatives to agree upon 
his policy which was stated in his letter to Mr. Seward on June 20, 
1863. This policy was "that while we claim our treaty rights to "buy 
and sell and hire in the treaty ports, subject in respect to our 
rights of property and person to the jurisdiction of our own govern- 
ments, we will not ask for nor take concessions of territory of the 
Chinese government over its own people nor ever menace the territorial 
integrity of the Chinese Empire". 25 It follows that this policy was 
to maintain the territorial integrity of China "by means of co- 
operation among the Powers in China. 

The British and French ministers pledged themselves to this 
policy. The Russian minister to China, Mr. Balluzick, announced that 

the Russian government did not desire to menace the territorial integ- 

2 6 

rity of china "but wished to bring China into the family of nations. 
No matter what real motives might "be behind these ministers' diplomacy 
Iffr. Burlingame f s task was to work for the realization of his policy. 
Fe protested against the claim made by the French consul at Ninpo to 
acquire the concession of a part of the city for the French govern- 
ment and succeeded in making the French minister have his consul with 
draw his claim. Fe obtained from the British minister, Mr. Brace, a 
circular to the British, consuls defining British jurisdiction over 

2 7 

the leased territory to China. Fe in such fashion carried out his 


Diplomatic Correspondence, 1864, p. 859. Cited in 
Williams, Anson Burlingame, p. 250. 

2 6 

F. W. Williams, Ansom Burlingame, p. 253. 

^ .nii ? 7 9. S. Diplomatic Correspondence, 1864, Part I, p. 851 . Cited 
HLWilljLams, Anson Burlingame. p. 256. 


Notioing his friendly and impartial attitude towards Jhina, 
the .'eking government could not but regard him as a true friend. 
When he was about to return to America in 1«67 , the emperor of China 
made him envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of China 
to the treaty powers. The object of this mission was to persuade 
the Powers to abandon the policy of force, to treat China on an 
equality with other nations, and to let her work out the system of 
reform in her own way and time. Mr. Burlingame accepted the com- 
mission on the ground that "when the oldest nation in the world 
containing one third of the human race, for the first time seeks 
to come into relation with the west and requests the youngest nation 

through its representative, to act as the medium of such change, 


the mission is not one to be solicited or rejected". 


When the Chinese commissioner and his associates arrived 
at Washington, the President and Congress honoured them with 
dinners. It was on this occasion that Secretary Seward suggested 
that the American convention of 1858 might be amended with the two 
purposes: (1) of adopting Mr. Burlingame" s policy of more liberal 
treatment of China and (£) of securing a plentiful supply of Chin- 
ese labor for the western states where Chinese laborers were welcome 
by American capitalists. Burlingame favorably accepted Seward's 
suggestion and concluded a treaty between China and the United 

28 Burlingame' s letter to Seward cited in F. V/. Williams, 
Anson Burlingame, p. 240. 

29 British - one 
French - one 
Chinese - two. 


States. The treaty was signed on July 28, 1868 , and proclaimed by 
the United States government in 1870. Then as the Chinese commis- 
sioner he proceeded to London, I'aris, and merlin. At these courts 
he spoke for China in such a manner that attentive hearings were 
time and again accorded to him. 

Upon his arrival at St. Petersburg he fell ill and passed 
away, thus bringing the Chinese mission to an end. China lost a 
real friend, a friend in need at the time when most of the foreigners 
in the country were affected with anti -Chinese prejudice. She lost 
a friend who desired that her autonomy might be preserved; that her 
independence might be secured; that she might have equality and dis- 
pense equal privileges to all nations. 3u All these desires were ex- 
pressed in the treaty 3 * he concluded for China with the United 

The most important feature of this treaty is the stipula- 
tion regarding voluntary emigration. Article V reads thus "the 
United States of America and the £mperor of China cordially recog- 
nize the mutual advantage of the free migration and emigration of 
their citizens and subjects respectively from the one country to 
the other for purpose of curiosity, of trade, or as permanent resi- 
dents. The high contracting parties therefore join in reprobating 

°° Burlingame's speech given at a banquet in Mew York City, 
cited Anson Burlingame, p. 137. 

31 For China's autonomy see Article I of Burliname treaty. 
Treaties and Conventions between the United States and other Powers, 
Vol. I, p. 233. 


any other than an entirely voluntary emigration for these purposes, 
they consequently agree to pass laws making it a penal offense for 
a citizen of the United States or Chinese subjects to take Chinese 
subjects either to the United States or to any other foreign country 
or for a Chinese subject or the citizen of the United States to take 
a citizen of the United States to China or to any other foreign 


country without their full and voluntary consent respectively." 
This stipulation had in view two things: (1) free emigration and (£) 
the prohibition of the so-called coolie trade. 

The coolie trade in the eye of American statesmen was 
scarcely less excusable than the African slave trade. The American 
government regarded the trade as an inhumane practice. Dr. Parker 
when American minister to China issued a notice warning American 
vessels from engaging in the transportation of Chinese coolies to 
Peru, Cuba, and other places. In 1862 Congress passed a law pro- 
hibiting American vessels to carry Chinese to foreign ports to be 
held as coolies and forbidding American citizens to engage in the 
trade or to build vessels for the trade. American naval officers 
were authorized to seize any American vessel that was found carry- 
ing Chinese coolies. American consuls at the ports of China were 
to examine emigrants on ships bound for the United States and to 
see whether they departed voluntarily. 23 

32 Treaties and Conventions between the United States 
and other Powers, Vol. I, p. 235. 

33 Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 281. 


On the other hand the United States encouraged voluntary 
Chinese immigrants. When the Burlingame treaty was concluded the 
favorable attitude of western states towards Chinese laborers was 
at its height because of the efficiency and cheapness of the latter. 
In 1870 there were more than fifty thousand Chinese employed on the 
western section of the Pacific Railway . Cheapness accounted for the 
welcome of Chinese laborers by the Americans at the beginning and it 
was the main cause that labor unions started agitations against 
their Chinese competitors afterwards. The revulsion of America's 
public sentiment toward Chinese labor led to the treaties concluded 
between the United States and China in the years 1888 and 1894. 
These treaties practically nullified the free emigration stipulation 
of the Burlingame treaty. In this respect one can not help agree- 
ing with Prof. Mayo Smith in saying that "As a matter of fact it 

does not appear that the Burlingame treaty changed the actual con- 


dition of things very much". 

During the period between the signature of the Burlingame 
treaty and the appearance of Secretary Hay's first circular note 
most of America's dealings with China were those concerning the 
Chinese in the United States. It was engrossed in its internal 
development. Since Caleb Cushing set forth the principle of equal 
opportunity and Anson Burlingame added the principle of maintenance 
of territorial integrity of China, the American policy remained 
intact until the purchase of Alaska and the annexation of the 

54 Cited in Williams, Anson Burlingame, p. 159. 


hawaiin and Philippine islands changed America's position on the 
Pacific and the policies of the Powers created a new situation in 
China. Then the interests of the American government in Chinese 
questions revived and itB policy was reaffirmed. These topics will 
be discussed in the next chapter. 




That the Chinese policy of the United States during the 
last decade especially the last lUBtrum of the nineteenth century 
was the outcome of the international complication in China is an es- 
tablished fact. The entangling situation developed in the most im- 
portant period of China's relations with the Powers was due to two 
main factors: firstly, china's weakness invited in foreign encroach- 
ment, and secondly, the jarring interests of the Powers gave rise to 
their conflicting policies in the Chinese Empire. To meet this sit- 
uation the government of the United States advanced its Chinese pol- 
icy. In order to appreciate its inwardness, it is necessary for us 
to know something about China's position and the relative positions 
of the Powers in that country during the later part of the last 

Ab a result of long isolation China was far behind those 
Powers with which she came into contact. Her troops were not well 
disciplined nor were they efficiently equipped. Until the late 
eighties of the nineteenth century she had no arsenals nor a navy. 
She could not protect her coast line if her enemy attempted to at- 
tack it. Moreover the Manchu government, a combination of the Man- 
darin bureaucracy and the Manchu monarchy was self-sufficient, 
corrupt, and unprogressive. Under such conditions it is no wonder 
that China was a field for foreign expansion. 

The occupation of Hongkong by the British marked the be- 
ginning of foreign encroachment on the Chinese Empire. The British 


took the island not only for the purpOBe of having an entrepot of 
trade hut also a place of armes. Lord Derby said "We occupy Hong- 
Kong not with the object of colonizing hut of using it from a mil- 
itary point of view? 1 The possession of the island by the British 
secured Great Britain a unique position in China. With the excep- 
tion of the Russians in north China, no other Power had a position 
in China so commanding as that of Great Britain. 

She was not contented with it and fixed her covetous eyes 
upon the south-western frontier of China. Having obtained her su- 
premacy in ndia she would from thence extend her influence into 
western China, the upper Yangtze valley, through Burma. In 1874 
a British expedition set out to explore the Upper Yangtze region, 
penetrated as far as Mouninse, and was checked there. Six years 
later another expedition explored that region and a member of this 
expedition, Mr. Margary, was murdered by the natives. Profiting by 
the death the British minister at Peking extracted the Chefoo con- 
vention from the Peking government granting the British the right 
of sending an expedition from Peking through Kansu and Kokonor or 
by way of Szechulen to Tibet and thence to india. The British did 
carry it out. The British government gradually realized its designs 
on Tibet. 

While tie British were establishing influences in the 
South and West of China, the Russians were pushing their way into 

1 Cited in Colquhoun, China in Transformation, p. 304. 


the north of the Chinese Empire. Russi a 1 8 occupation of the Amur 
province placed her in juxtaposition with the eastern border of 
China. By the treaty of Peking in 1860 Russia got possession of the 
maritime province of Manchuria with the fine harbor of Vladivostook. 
She annexed the .Oildja district in the west of China. In the year 
1882 the Moscovite government decided to build the trans-Siberian 
railway and a few years later (1896) it secured permission from the 
Manchu government to link the trans-Siberian railway with Vladivos- 
took through Manchuria. 2 

Meanwhile the French did not remain inactive. In 1861 
France annexed Cochin-China. From this foothold, French expansion 
in the Indo-China peninsula went forward in all directions. By 1882 
the French government began to struggle with the government of China 
for suzerainty over Annam. The strife finally resulted in the Franco- 
Chinese war which was closed by the treaty of 1885. By this treaty 
the government of China recognised France's sovereignty over Cochin 
China and her protectorate over Cambodia and Annan. 

During the first period of foreign aggression upon China - 
a period of about fifty years from the Opium War to the Chino- 
Japanese War - the Powers encroached upon the fringe of Chinese 
territory. Even Japan, a little island empire, once a pupil of 
China, participated in the spoliation of the Chinese Empire. Her 

8 Ross, The Russo-Japanese War, p. 20. 

NOTE: By this route through Chinese territory the length 
of the railway between Lake Baikal and Vladivostok would be short- 
ened some 500 miles and the period required for its completion, 
proportionately decreased. 

Hayes, A Political and Social History of Modern Europe 
Vol.11, p. 569. 


aggressive action will be discussed later in connection wit>i the 
Chino- Japanese War. 

Let us see what development of Americans relations with 
the Far East took place during the latter part of this period. In 
1867 the United States purchased Alaska, the Russian possession in 
North America directly opposite to Manchuria. The possession of that 
region by the United States extended the base of American commerce 
with china. n To unite the East of Asia with the West of America 
is the aspiration of commerce now." 4 Furthermore, the completion of 
the pacific Railway in 1869 secured the United States an important 
position in the commerce between the Pacific Coast and China. Al- 
though it had no foothold on the Pacific or on Chinese soil, the 
development of affairs evidently pointed to the direction that it 
could not hold aloof of Chinese questions. When the China- Japanese 
War broke out in 1894-1895, the government of the United States did 
a good deal service for the belligerents. 

This war was the natural result of Japan's aggressive 
policy concerning the possession of China. In 1874 Japan seized 
the Liu Kiu archipelago and then turned her covetous eyes upon 
Formosa and Korea. In 1876 she recognized Korea as an independent 
kingdom. But the government of China would not give up its claims 
to sovereignty over Korea because for thousands of years the latter 
had been under a Chinese protectorate. When China sent troops to 
Korea to reassert the claim, the Japanese government seized the 
Korean king, who had invited the Chinese troops, and prepared for 


Charles Sumner, cited in Hart, American History told by 
contemporaries, Vol. IV, p. 547. 


war with China. The details of the war known as the Chino- 
Japanese War do not concern us directly: it will suffice to notice 
the diplomatic activities of the Powers interested in the War and 
especially the attitude of the United States towards this conflict. 

The American government held that the deplorable war 
between China and Japan would in no way endanger American policy 
in Asia. It declared that the United States would maintain 
impartial and friendly neutrality. Throughout the course of the 
war the American diplomatic and consular representatives in the 
countries involved in the war at the request of the combatant gov- 
ernments extended their good offices to the Chinese in Japan and 
to the Japanese in China respectively. The ministers were instruct 
ed that their function was personal and unofficial and that they 
should do what they could consistently with international law 
and America»s position as a neutral for the protection of the 
Chinese residents and their interests in Japan and of the Japanese 
in China. 5 The service was discharged cheerfully and with consid- 
erable difficulty and to the satisfaction of the belligerents. 

A few days after the declaration of war, Great Britain, 
Germany, France and Russia contemplated to intervene in the hos- 
tilities between China and Japan upon the basis that Korea's in- 
dependence was to be guaranteed by the Powers and Japan was to 
receive an indemnity for the war expense from the Chinese govern- 
ment. The British ambassador in Washington waited upon Secretary 
Gresham to ascertain whether the United States would join Great 

5 Mr. Gresham to Mr. Dun Foreign Relation of the 
United States, 1894, pp. 372, 373. 


Britain in the proposed intervention. Mr. Gresham replied that 
"the President earnestly desires that China and Japan shall speed- 
ily agree upon terras of peace alike honorable to "both and not humil- 
iating to Korea, he can not join England, Germany, Russia and France 


in an intervention as required". 

Although the government of the United States declined to 
co-operate with the Powers in the contemplated intervention of the 
war between China and Japan, it made a separate effort to mediate 
between these nations. Mr. Dun, the American minister at Tokyo, 
was directed by his home government to approach the Japanese govern- 
ment with a view of ascertaining whether a tender of the Presidents 
good offices in the interests of a peace alike honorable to both 
nations would be acceptable to the government at Tokyo. 7 The 
offer of meditation was rejected by the Japanese government because 
it did not feel disposed to entertain an overture of peace at the 
time when it had not pressed its victories far enough for the ad- 
vancement of severe demands. 

The Japanese gained one battle after another over the 
Chinese. In the early spring of 1895 the Japanese troops pushed 
their way to the Liaotung peninsula, captured Port Arthur and 
Talienwan and seized the naval base of Weihaiwei. Then the 
Japanese government made its intention for peace known to the Peking 
government through the American ministers at Tokyo and Peking. 

6 Foreign Relation of the United States, 1894, p. 325. 

7 Mr. Gresham to Mr. Dun Nov. 16, 1894, Foreign Rela- 
tions of the United States, 1894, p. 345. 


Through the mediation of the American diplomatic representatives 
negotiations for a peace were opened. The result was the treaty 
of Shemonoseki , signed on the 17th of April (1895). By that treaty 
the complete independence of Korea was recognized by the govern- 
ment of china, and the Liaotung peninsula and Formosa were ceded 
to japan. 

Six days after the signature of the treaty the Russian, 
German and French governments addressed a joint note to the Chinese 
government protesting againBt the cession of the Liaotung penin- 
sula on the ground that it would threaten the safety of their in- 
terests in that quarter of the Chinese Empire. Ath the same time 
they advised Japan to relinquish her conquests on the mainland. 
She reluctantly withdrew her demands on the mainland and agreed 
to receive in return an additional indemnity. Thus Russia deprived 
Japan of her fruits of victory. $hat was the motive of the Rus- 
sian government in doing this? 

The explanation is not hard to find. The Russian govern- 
ment's century-old ambition was to obtain an ice free outlet in 
the Far East. Vladivostok was not ice free all the winter but 
Port Arthur was. Fad the Russian government not torn up the treaty 
of shemonoseki, it could not have had its desire for an ice-free 
harbor in the Far East satisfied. It took the initiative in 
demanding the revision of the treaty because it wished to pre- 
serve Port Arthur for itself. By the Carsini agreement which 

8 Hayes, A Political and Social History of Modern 
Europe. Vol. II, p. 566. 


the Russian government made with the government of China in 1896, 
the former obtained from the latter a concession for the construc- 
tion of a railway through Manchuria thus connecting the trans- 
Siberian railway with Port Arthur and the lease of Kiao-chow to 
Russia for fifteen years. 

Being alarmed by Russians aggressive policy and prompted 
by selfish motives 9 Germany at once resorted to drastic measures, 
disregarding international comity. Before 1895 Germany had not 
played any prominent role in Far Eastern politics. But now she re- 
solved to distinguish herself and to single herself out of the rest 
of the Powers by an act unprecedented in the annals of diplomacy. 
Upon the murder of two missionaries in Shangtun Province in November 
1897, German vessels of war anchored off the harbor of Kiao-chow, 
immediately landed troops, and seized the city of Kiao-chow. Then 
the German minister took up negotiations with the Chinese govern- 
ment. As a result a convention was concluded. "A zone of 50 kilo- 
meters surrounding the Bay of Kiao-chow at high water" 10 was ceded 
to Germany. The Chinese government also ceded to "Germany on lease 
provisionally for ninety-nine years both sides of the entrance to 

the Bay of Kiao-chow". 11 Kiao-chow was declared a free port on 

September 2, 1898. Germany's mailed fist set the evil ball a 
rolling. Fer high-handed measure marked the opening of the second 


NOTE: For Germany »s motive for seizing the city, see 
Mr. Denby»s report For. Rel. of the U.S., 1898, pp. 187, 189. 

Das Staatsarchiev, vol. 61, No. 11518. Cited in 
Moore, International Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 473. 


Cited in Moore, International Law Digest, Vol.V, p. 474. 

2 9 

period of fierce land- scrambling by the Powers in China. 

As soon as the German question was settled the Russian 
government complained to the Chinese government that the cession 
of Kiao-chow to Germany disturbed the political status quo in the 
Far East and that Russian interests in this quarter were affected 
adversely. On the 18th of December Russian war ships occupied Port 
Arthur and impelled the Chinese government to lease the port and 
Talienwan with adjacent waters, for twenty-five years, subject to 
prolongation by mutual agreement. 13 The Russians, like the Germans, 
declared Talienwan to be a free port but closed Port Arthur to other 
nations. Now the world saw the reason why Russia two years earlier 
interfered with the shemonoseki treaty. 

The gains of Germany and Russia were not without effect 
upon the French government. It demanded and secured the cession of 
Kwangchau Bay on the same terms as xiao-chow had been ceded to 
Germany. 14 Kwangchau Wan, situated in the district of Keichow, 
Kwangtung Province served as a halfway station between the extreme 
East and Indo-China. 

Great Britain watched the action of the Russian, German, 
and French governments with jealousy and apprehension. Their gains 
were her grievances, she would not remain a passive spectator. 
The British government made the Chinese government cede Wei-hai-Wei 
to Great Britain on the same terms that Port Arthur had been ceded 

13 For. Rel. of the U. S. , vol. 1898, p. 182. 

14 ibid. 1898, p. 191. 


to Russia. "Wei-hai-wei is an excellent harbor much larger and 
better than Port Arthur." 15 The British made Wei-hai-wei "a 
second or northern Hongkong" 16 - a naval base from which they could 
keep a watchful eye upon their traditional rivals, the Russians. 
Furthermore the British government secured the lease of Mirs Bay, 
Deep Bay and the adjacent islands near Hongkong. 

As all the Powers except Russia announced that they would 
make their leased territories in China free ports open to inter- 
national settlement and trade, their measures did not seem to the 

1 7 

American government to menace America's interests in China. But 

the President of the United States in no case was in sympathy with 

a power which sought a lease of Chinese territory and instructed 

the American minister at Pekin, Mr. Conger, to assume an absolutely 
1 8 

neutral attitude. Had the Powers not taken the measure of marking 
out the "spheres of influence" which evidently jeopardized America's 
interests and impaired her treaty rights in China perhaps the govern 
ment of the United states would not have announced its Chinese pol- 
icy in 1899. 

The immediate cause of Secretary Hay's announcement was 
the doctrine of "spheres of influence". Great Britain had the 
honor of being the leading figure in marking out the "spheres of 

15 Foreign Relation of the United States, 1848, p. 190. 

16 ibid, 1898, p. 190. 

17 See President McKinley's message, For. Rel. of the U. S, 
1899, appendix p. 18. 

18 Sec. Hay to Mr. Conger tel. March 2,1899. 

China V 649. cited Moore, International Law Digest, Vol.V, p. 475. 


influence" in the Chinese Empire. In 1898 Great Britain extracted 
from the Chinese Government a pledge that the Yangtze valley would 
never be alienated to another Power, thus marking out the vast 
territories of central china and the richest provinces of the em- 
pire as the British sphere of influence. Prance made the Chinese 
government promise not to alienate to another Power the provinces 
of Kwangtung, Kwangsi, Yunnang, and the island of Hainan. Japan 
secured a similar promise as regards the province of Fukien. Ger- 
many made Shangtung her sphere of influence and Russia would have 
her sphere of influence include the whole of Manchuria. The Powers 
took the first opportunity to seize special privileges in China 
without paying any respect to China's rights or giving any thought 
to international ethics. 

The actions of the land-hungry Powers were not destitute 
of far-reaching effects. They called forth reactions "both from 
China and the United States. These reactions will he discussed in 

The reactions on the part of China were of two types, 
constructive and destructive. The constructive reaction found its 
expression in the reform movement of 1898. The Emperor of the 
Manchu dynasty seeing city after city leased to the Powers, the 
spheres of influence marked in the Empire, and numberless demands 
granted, was conscious of the helplessness of the government and 

wished to carry out reforms suggested by a few enthusiastic but 
inexperienced Chinese scholars. The well-intentioned Emperor met 
obstacles of great resisting force. There was a group of Manchus 
and Chinese who were enemies to the new order and western civiliz- 
ation. The Empress dowager was at the head of the conservative 


and reactionary party. She took over the reins of government from 
the Emperor, whom she practically imprisoned, and had six of the 
reformers executed. The leaders of the revolutionary movement man- 
aged to flee to Japan. Thus a doup d» etat was affected with the 
slightest disturbance. This coup d' etat sealed for the time "being 
the doom of the peaceful regeneration of China by means of reforms 
and inaugurated the anti-foreign movement which culminated in the 
Boxer Uprising. After the reform movement failed, the conservative 
party in power resolved to stamp out foreign influence in China 
by force. 

The reactions on the part of the United States can be 
better appreciated in the light of the new development of America's 
position in the Pacific basin. As early as 1893 the question of 
annexation of Hawaii to the American Union was brought before the 

1 9 

American government by the new government of the Hawaiian Republic. 
The question was not settled until after the close of the Spanish 
War. From the military point of view the annexation seemed necessary 
In July, 1898, Congress by joint resolution passed the bill that 
the Hawaiian islands were to be incorporated into the American 
Union. 20 At the close of the Spanish War, Spain ceded the Philip- 
pine islands to the United States. These two momentous events, the 
annexation of Hawaii and the cession of the Philippine group to 
the United states changed its relations with the Far East. The 
Americans began to realize that the future prosperity of the United 

19 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1894, appendix p. 645. 

20 Hart, The American Nation: A History, vol. 25, pp. 

138, 139. 


States was to be sought in the Asiatic trade and by having these 
islands as stepping stones to the Far j.ast and as bases for commer- 
cial operation the Americans were in a position to compete with 
other nations in commerce and industries in China. 

Yet the policies of the powers in ohina darkened the pros 
pect of America's commercial development in that country. r lhey 
claimed the enjoyment of special privileges in their own"spheres" . 
They might at any time carry out new measures of exclusion so that 
their own capitalists would be under conditions more favorable and 
that other nations could not compete with them. If such measures 
had been carried out American capitalists would have suffered the 
most because the United States had no sphere of influence in China 
wherein they could enjoy special privileges. That meant that China 
would no longer be a market for American products. At such a crit- 
ical moment the government of the United States could nox be a 
spectator but became an actor in the scene. In September ,1899 , 
Secretary ^ay addressed circular notes to all the Powers having in- 
terests in China, requesting each of them to declare substantially 
to the following effect. 

"First. That each will in no wise interfere with any 
treaty port or any vested interest within any so-called 'sphere of 
interest' or leased territory it may have in China. 

"Second. That the Chinese treaty tariff of the time being 
shall apply to all merchandise landed or shipped to all such ports 
as are within such 'sphere of interest' (unless they be free ports) 
no matter to what nationality it may belong and that duties so lev- 
iable shall be collected by the Chinese government. 


"Third. That it will levy no higher harbor dues on vessels 
of another nationality frequenting any port in such sphere, than 
shall be levied on vessels of its own nationality and no higher 
railroad charge over lines built, controlled or operated within 
such sphere on merchandise belonging to citizens or subjects of 
other nationalities transported through such 'sphere' than shall be 
levied on similar merchandise belonging to its own nationals trans- 
ported over equal distances" 

On the surface this note was merely economical but in fact 
it was political. It performed a two -fold function. On the one 
hand it aimed at the protection of America's interests in China 
and on the other hand it aimed to prevent the Powers from taking 
a further step towards exclusive economic domination in their own 
spheres, thus preventing them from carrying out the plan of the 
political absorption of the spheres. As Secretary Kay knew that 
there was a conflict between the powers and no agreement had yet 
been entered upon by them as to what should be done with China, he 
approached them separately with his notes. Great Britain, France, 
Germany, Russia, Japan, Italy - one after the other received a note. 
Accordingly each government was to give reply separately. From the 
replies we can see what these Powers thought of the propositions 
set forth by the famous American diplomat. 

Great Britain declared in her reply to the United States 
that the British government had no intention or desire to depart 

21 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1899, p. 129 


from Its traditional policy of securing equal opportunity for the 
subjects and citizens of all nations in regard to commercial enter- 
prise in China and that it would apply the three principles for- 
warded by the American government to "all the leased territories of 
Wei-hai-wei and all territory in China which may hereafter be ac- 
quired by Great Britain by lease or otherwise and all spheres of 
interests now held or that may hereafter be held by her in China, 
prov ided similar dec larati on is mad e by other powers concerned. " 22 

Germany's answer to the United States said that the German 
government "practically carried out to the fullest extent in its 

Chinese possessions absolute equality of treatment of all nations 


with regard to trade, navigation and commerce; and that it "enter- 
tains no thought of departing in the future from this principle .... 
so long as it is not forced to do so, on account of consideration of 
reciprocity by a divergence from it by other governments" 24 and that 
it was "readt to participate with the United States and the other 
powers in an agreement made upon these lines by which the same 
rights are reciprocally secured." 

The Russian government in its usual involved diplomatic 
reply declared that in so far as its leased territory in China was 
concerned, it had followed the policy of an open door "by creating 
Dalienwan a free port" and "if at some future time that port al- 
though remaining free itself should be separated by customs limits 

22 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1899, pp. 357, 136. 
23, 24, 25 For# Ee i, f the U. S. , 1899, p. 131. 


from other portions of tho territory in question, the customs duties 

would be levied in the zone subject to the tariff upon all foreign 

merchandise without distinction as to the nationality" 26 , that 

Russia had no intention whatever of claiming any privileges for its 

own subjects to the exclusion of other foreigners in the ports 

opened or to be opened to foreign commerce by China, and that the 

question of customs duties belonged to China. 27 

The government of the United States also received from 

the French and Japanese governments favorable replies with the 


natura l reservations . It did not receive a final reply from the 

Italian government until Mr. Draper, the American ambassador to 

Italy, approached that government with the declarations of all the 

other governments. The Italian government then declared that it 

would adhere willingly to the propositions announced by the American 

government . 

Thus Secretary Kay with diplomatic strategy of a high 
order obtained from each of the Powers a formal assurance of its 
adherence to his enlightened principles. In order to make the 
Powers commit themselves to their pledge to maintain the open door 
policy he went one step further On March 20, 1900, he instructed 
the American ambassadors at London, merlin, Paris, St. Petersburg, 
and Kome and the American minister at Tokyo to inform the 

26, 27 For< Rel< of the ^ g ^ 1899, pp. 141, 142. 

28 For France's reply see For. Eel. of the U. S. , 1899 ,pp, 
128, 129. For Japan's reply see ibid. p. 139. 


For the reply see ibid. p. 139. 


governments to which they were accredited that the oondition ou 
originally attached to the acceptance of the declaration suggested 
by the United States had been complied with and the American govern- 
ment would therefore consider the assent given by the government 
to the acceptance of the proposals of the American government "as 
final and definite". 3 -*" Thus the subtle and direct American diplo- 
mat brought the negotiations to a triumphant termination. 

Thus far i have shown how the partition of commercial 
and industrial interests in the Chinese Empire by the Powers called 
forth hay's Chinese policy. It remains for me to point out how 
Mr. Hay carried out and maintained the policy during its trying 
period, the first lustrum of the present century. 

z ® See Supra p. 35, words underlined. 
Also p. 36, " " 

31 K. Doc. 547, 56 Cong., 1 Sess. 




In the preceding chapter we have noticed that the scrambling 
policy of the land-greedy powers, caused "by mutual fears and Jeal- 
ousies, called forth reaction from China, the reform movement. Now 
we will turn to another phase of China's reaction to the encroachmen' 
of the Powers upon the Chinese Empire. Their atrocious actions made 
so profound an impression upon the minds of the Chinese people that 
they regarded all the Powers as nothing more or less than land 
grabbers. This anti-foreign feeling, manifested itself at first in 
mob movements against Chinese Christians, finally developed into a 
general anti -foreign movement known as the Boxer Uprising. The land- 
greedy Powers had a great share in creating the antagonism of the 
Chinese to foreigners. "Western injustice toward the v:ast is the 
cause of much of the Eastern hatred of the West". 1 

The Boxer Uprising had its storm-center in the province 
of Shangtung. Up to the fall of 1897 this province wherein there 
were more missionaries than any other province was popular for its 
treatment of foreigners. How came it about that the people of 
Shangtung turned out to be truculent haters of foreigners? The 
answer is not hard to seek. It was the seizure of Kiao-chow by the 
Germans that worked an ominous change in the attitude of the people 
toward foreigners. It was the Germans who burned down two villages 

1 G. B. Smith, Causes of Anti-foreign Feeling in China, 
Horth American Review 171 : 184. 


in a certain district of Shangtung that inflamed the people to mad- 
ness. The fanatic people overwhelmed by their anti -foreign feeling 
gave vent to their vengeance in slaughtering Roman Catholics, burn- 
ing churches, and committing other frightful excesses. 

It was not a very hard task for the local authorities to 
nip the anti -foreign movement in the bud. But they were instructed 
secretly by the Peking government to encourage the movement instead 
of suppressing it. Since the coup d' etat the reins of government 
were in the hands of a crew of reactionaries, with the empress 
dowager as guiding figure. They were drunk with antipathy toward 
the foreigners, and it was plainly due to the powers' attitude 
toward China. "The various Powers cast upon us looks of tiger- 
like voracity, hustling each other in their endeavors. to be the 
first to seize upon our innermost territories." Because of this 
they resolved to appeal to the last resort for stamping out foreign- 
ers, a conduct lacking in tact and judgment. The Peking government 
regarded the Boxers as patriots whom it instructed local authorities 
to encourage. The fiendish work of the Boxers was allowed and the 
Boxers increased in numbers. The diplomatic corps demanded their 
suppression in vain. The Boxers gradually worked their way like 
wild-fire to the southern Chi hie province and finally reached Peking 
in June, 1900. 

2 G. B. Smith, Causes of Anti-foreign Feeling in China, 
North American Review 171 : 188. 

Empress Dowager's edict appeared in the Peking Gazette, 
1898, cited in the Boxer Rebellion, Clements Paul Henry, p. 625. 


than the Boxer outrage was developing in Shangtung the 
property and lives of American missionaries were in danger and they 
were endangered indirectly by the Germans. At the request of the 
missionaries at Che-foo, the government of the United States in- 
structed Mr. Conger, American minister at Peking, to say to the Ger- 
man minister that the government of the United States would expect 
that the German authorities in Shangtung would see to it that Amer- 
ican citizens and particularly American missionaries in that province 

should receive equal treatment with German missionaries in the matter 


of necessary protection of life and property. The reliance upon 
the Germans for the protection of the Americans in Shangtung showed 
that at the beginning of the troublous time the American government 
had not yet formulated a rule for its conduct. Secretary Hay in- 
structed Mr. Conger to do what he could for the protection of Amer- 
ican citizens in north China. 

When the diplomatic corps was taking measures for the 
protection of the legations by bringing guards, Mr. Conger reported 
to the Department of State the state of affairs and asked if he was 
authorized to concert with the naval authorities on board the U.S.S. 
Wheeling ^ measures for the protection of American interests and 
the American legation in Peking. To this Mr. Hay promptly consented 
and told him to "Act independently in protection of American interests 
where practicable and concurrently with representatives of the other 

4 Sec. Hay to Mr. Conger, April 16, 1900, .Foreign Relation 
of the United States, 1900, p. 116. 

5 Arrived at TaiOi April 7, 1900. 

powers if necessity arise'. A few days later he communicated with 
Mr. Conger that "We have no policy in China, except to protect with 
energy American interests and especially American citizens and the 
legation. There must be nothing done which would commit us to 
future action inconsistent with your standing instructions. There 


must be no alliance." Such was the attitude of the united States 
towards Chinese affairs at the time when the Boxer movement was 
about to reach its climax. 

Meanwhile the admirals of the allied fleet anchoring off 
Taku were not inactive. They prepared to send a larger force to 
Peking to strengthen the legation guards. One of the Taku forts 
opened fire upon the ships which attempted to make a landing. The 
admirals held a meeting on board the Criturion and made an agreement 
to attack the Taku forts. But the American admiral Kempff was 
opposed to any concerted action of a hostile nature. He refused to 
take part in the hostile action because he was instructed by his 
government that he should use his force for the protection of 
American interests and citizens in China not for waging war against 
her. Moreover, he held that there had been no declaration of war 
against China and "a hostile demonstration might consolidate the 
anti -foreign elements and strengthen the Boxers to oppose the re- 
lieving column". However, the vessels of other Powers bombarded 

6 Eay to Conger June 8, 1900, For. Rel. of the J. S. 
1900, p. 143. 

7 Hay to Conger June 10, 1900, For. Rel. of the U. S. 
1900, p. 143. 


President McKinley, annual message, Dec. 3, 1900. For .Rel. 
of the U.S. 1900, viil. 


the Taku forts on June 16th, and after two dayB' engagement, the 
forts fell into the hands of the Powers. Then the Manchu government 
declared war on the Powers and openly supported the Boxers. The Im- 
perial guards joined them. The legations were besieged and "subject 

from June 21st to July 27th to a storm of shot, shell and fire- 

crackers'.'. The Manchu government was at war with the Powers. 

But the local or provincial governments followed a course 
of action entirely different from the government at Peking. The 
Yangtze valley viceroys Liu Kungyi and Chang Ghi Tung, being aware 
of the fact that the central government was violating national 
comity and was going to bring disaster to China, formed a league and 
made a definite pledge to the following effect. "7fe, the viceroys 
of the Liang Kiang and Lean Ku provinces, undertake to hold ourselves 
responsible for the security of foreign life and property within our 
respective jurisdictions as well as in the province of Chikiang, so 
long as the treaty Powers do not land troops in either the Yangtze 
valley or the province of Chikiang." 10 Wu Ting Fang, Chinese ministei 
at V.'ashington, transmitted the telegram containing this pledge to the 
Department of State. The American government was in sympathy with 
these viceroys and Secretary Hay assured Mr* Wu that so long as 
these viceroys could maintain order in the five provinces and would 
afford protection to the lives and rights of the foreigners therein, 
the President had no intention of sending any troops into regions 

9 Conger's report. For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 552. 

10 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 273. 



where their presence was not necessary. The Department of State 
instructed the American consuls in China to co-operate with the vice- 
roys for the preservation of peace and order. Mr. Goodnow, United 
States Consul -General at Shanghai, had an interview with Lui Kun Yi 
discussing the matter. 12 

The development of the seditious movement in Peking went 
on. The legations had no comn/uni cat ions with their respective home 
governments. The German minister, Baron von Ketteler,was murdered 
in Peking. The first relief column was checked at Anting and obliged 
to retreat to Tien Tsien. At this moment, the Yangtze valley vice- 
roys cabled Mr. Wu asking him to inform the United States govern- 
ment that China had no intention whatever of breaking off relations 
with the Powers and that these viceroys desired that the American 
government would take the initiative in conferring with the govern- 
ments of the other Powers urging them to give instructions to the 
commanders of the allied force at Tien Tsien to refrain from further 
fighting and to wait until Li Hung Chang arrived at /eking and open- 
ed negotiations with the diplomatic representatives of various 
Powers. 15 Under conditions in Peking as referred to already, the 
American government naturally would not agree with the proposition 
set forth by the Chinese provincial governments. 14 

11 Seo. Eay to Mr. Wu, June 22, 1900. For. Rel. of U.S., 
1900, p. £74. 

12 For. Rel. of U. S.,1900, p. 252^ 

13 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, pp. 274, 275. 

14 Sec. Hay's note to Wu June 25, 1900, For. Rel. of the 
U. S. , 1900 , p. 275. 

The American government, however, began to take a definite 
step toward the solution of the Chinese question, since it had 
communicated with these viceroys. On July 3rd Secretary nay sent 
to eleven Powers a circular telegram proclaiming the attitude of the 
American government. The main points are these: 

1. The United states would adhere to the policy, initiated 
by it in the treaty of peace of 1857 with the Chinese nation, of 
furtherance of lawful commerce, and of the protection of lives and 
property of the citizens guaranteed under extraterritorial treaty 
right 8 and by the law of nations. 

2. The United States proposed to hold the responsible 
authors to the uttermost accountability, if wron^ should be done 
to American citizens in China. 

3. The United States regarded the condition at Peking as 
one of anarchy, and would remain at peace with the local authorities 
so long as they used their power in protecting the lives and proper- 
ty of foreigners in China, and it would regard them as representing 
the Chinese people. 

4. The President's object was to act concurrently with 
the other Powers in opening up communication with Peking and res- 
cuing the American officials and citizens in danger and in protect- 
ing all American legitimate interests in all parts of China and in 
aiding to prevent the disturbance from spreading to other parts of 
the Chinese Empire and to prevent the recurrence of such disorder. 

5. The United States aimed at (1) a solution of the 
problem which might bring about permanent safety and peace to China, 
(2) preservation of Chinese territorial and administrative entity. 


(3) protection of all rights granted to fr : endly powers by treaty 
and international law, and finally the maintenance of the principle 
of equal and impartial trade in China. 

ThiB declaration received general approval from the Powers. 
Each of them intimated that it intended to adhere to these princi- 
ples. The French Minister of Foreign Affaire, Mr. Delcasse', announc- 
ed in the Chamber of Jepute that France did not wish for the break- 
up of China but wished for concerted action on the part of the 
Powers during the preeent trouble in China. 16 Lord Salisbury, Pre- 
mier of Great Britain, expreseed his sincere sympathy with the 
attitude of the United States. 17 ^ven the Russian government, evi- 
dently by working for its ulterior aims in Manchuria, announced that 


it had "no designs of territorial acquisition in China". Thus the 
Powers, with the exception of Russia in Manchuria, followed the 
guiding principles, set out by Secretary Hay, and took concerted 
action throughout the trying period of the Boxer trouble. 

In the second relief expedition the Powers manifested 
their attitude toward the principles, laid down by Hay. An inter- 
national force of 18,800 men wae finally organized. To this force 
the United States contributed 2,500 soldiers who came from the 
Philippines. The international force was under the command of 

15 For Hay 1 s note dated July 3, 1900, see For. Hel. of 
the U. S. , 1900, p. 299. 

16 For. Rel. of the J. S. , 1900, p. 317. 

17 ibid. p. 313. 

18 ibid. p. 304. 

Field Marshal Count von Y/aldersee. On August 4, the allied forces 
began to move toward .'eking. Having defeated the Boxers and the 
imperial troops who attempted to check the advance of the allied 
forces, they reached Peking, stormed and took it on August 13th. 
Then followed the raising of the siege of the legations, and the 
looting of the city by the troops of some of the Powers. The city 
was occupied jointly by them upon a definite understanding among 
themselves. The last attempt of the Manchu government for the ex- 
pulsion of the foreigners from China was thus brought to an end. 

How the absorbing ouestion, what should be done with 
China, invited the attention of every Power. China was in a pecul- 
iar situation. The Manchu court had fled to Shansi when the allied 
forces were near the capital. There was no central government but 
there was a league of local governments which would represent the 
Chinese nation. Li Hung Chang was appointed commissioner to nego- 
tiate peace with the diplomatic representatives of the Powers. 
Staring at each other they were at first at a loss as to the next 
step toward the solution of the Chinese question. Then the German 
government stepped forward with its proposal for a preliminary con- 
dition in peace negotiations. The condition was that the Chinese 
government should surrender such persons as were determined upon 
by the diplomatic representatives at Peking as being the leaders 
and perpetrators of the "crimes committed in Peking against inter- 
national law" 19 . The German government communicated the proposal 
to the government of other Powers. 

19 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, x> . 341. 

4 7 

Germany' 8 allies, the Austrian and Italian governments, 
naturally agreed with the proposal. But the reply of the United 
States government did not sound agreeable to the Germans. It con- 
tained three points: firstly, the Chinese government itself should 
be allowed to work out the punitive measures, and the United States 
would not join the demand that the surrender of such persons should 
be a preliminary condition for diplomatic negotiation with China; 
secondly, the punishment of the responsible authors of wrongs in 
all parts in China should be provided for in the negotiation for 
final settlement; and, thirdly, the United States wished to open 
negotiations with China at the earliest practical moment with a view 
of bringing about a preliminary settlement whereby the Chinese 
government could exercise fully its powers for the preservation of 
order and for the protection of foreigners in China. 20 

Following the German proposal, the trench government ad- 
dressed notes to the other Powers, stating its proposals as basis 
of negotiations with the Chinese government. The proposals were 
these : 

1. The punishment of the principal guilty persons who 
were to be designated by the representatives at Peking. 

2. The continuance of the interdiction against the import- 
ation of arms. 

3. Equitable indemnities for foreign governments, corpor- 
ations, and individuals. 

20 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p 34. 


4. The organization in Peking of a permanent guard for 
the legations. 

5. The dismantling of the forts at Tajui. 

6. The military occupation of two or three points on the 
road from Tien Tsien to Peking. 21 

As to these bases for negotiation, the American government 
held quite different views. it would not commit itself to a perman- 
ent participation in occupation of points on the road between Tien- 
Tsien.and Peking and deemed "it desirable that the powers should ob- 
tain from the Chinese government the assurance of their rights to 
guard their legations and to have means of unrestricted access to 
them whenever required". 22 By making this reservation, the govern- 
ment of the United States did not mean to present any obstacle to 
the initiation of negotiations but hoped that it would be found 
practicable to begin such negotations at early days. 

The French proposals were accepted by the Powers with 
certain reservations. But negotiations between the Chinese pleni- 
potentiaries and the diplomatic representatives did not begin until 
the middle of October. During the period between the fall of Peking 
and the opening of negotiations the members of the diplomatic 
corps were busy in formulating their demands. 

Meanwhile remarkable events developed in Northern China. 
After the capture of the capital several expeditions of retaliation 

21 For. Rel. of the J. S. , 1900, p. 321 

22 ibid. 1900, p. 523. 


under the command of von /,'aldersee were made to Pao-Tingfu and Cheng 
Tingfu in the province of Chihli. For the purpose of securing peace, 
Li nung Chang ordered Chinese troops not to interfere with the ex- 
cursions upon any account. The incursion troops had done consider- 
able damage to the people of Chihli. The American troops did not 
participate in these expeditions. 

Tien Tsien, as already pointed out elsewhere, had b^-en 
occupied by the allies since June 23. The city became a strong 
temptation to the Powers. At last they could no longer control them- 
selves and indulged in struggle for permanent extensions of the con- 
cessions which they had established. Russia which had disavowed 
territorial designs in China, now had the honour of making the first 
move in a land-grab game on a smaller scale. In early November, the 
Russian consuls in Tien Tsien announced that the large tract of land 
on the left bank of the Pen River became the property of the Russian 
troops by act of war. 2 ^ Then followed Belgium, Germany, France, 
Austria, Italy, and Japan, each taking a tract of land for the ex- 
tension of its own concession. * Only a piece of land, which had 
been an American concession and abandoned in the year 1896, was left. 


Mr. Conger regarded Russia's movement as a dangerous precedent, 
when Mr. Rogsdale , American consul at Tien Tsien, reported the 
Russian announcement to him. He maintained that all action in 

25 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 42. 

24 For announcements for the occupation of the lands by 
the Powers see For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, pp. 46, 47, 52. 

25 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, pp. 39, 40. 


relation to securing now or extending old concessions should be de- 
ferred until a final settlement of the Boxer question was reached 
and the rights of all nations could be considered, he instructed Mr. 
Rogsdale to address a protest to the Russian consul but the reply of 
the latter was evasive. Then he addressed a note to his Russian 
colleague at Peking demonstrating that "Tien Tsien is an open port 
and the property under question is needed by and should be reserved 
for the use of all the Powers. If foreign occupation of it was 
necessary it should be occupied as an international settlement. Un- 
der the present movement of the allied forces in China, there are 
still stronger reasons why this large tract of land, including an 
important public railway station and other property necessary for 
international use should not be appropriated by a single power. 26 
The Russian minister r s reply was very curious. It dis- 
claimed any intention of acquiring territory by conquest, or of tak- 
ing possession of railway station at Tien Tsien by Russian govern- 
ment. It made a poor evasion b; r saying "If the communication of 
Mr. Poppe contains any expressions which could be so constructed 

n P 7 

they have certainly been erroneously used by him. Mr. Conger 

asked the Russian minister to instruct the Russian consul to have 
the error corrected but the note had no effect. The same was the 
case with his protests to the other Powers. 

The nest step which he took in regard to the matter at 
Tien Tsien, was to reserve that tract of land formerly the American 

26 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 45. 

27 ibid 1901, p. 45. 

oonoesBion for the United States concession or "preferably have it in- 
cluded in an international settlement . " 2e He held that all the 
foreign settlements at Tien Tsien should be th^ same as those at 
Shanghai. Ee instructed ilr. Rogsdale to communicate with his col- 
leagues at Tien Tsien to the following effect: 

"For the purpose of preserving the tract of land known as 
the United States concession in Tien Tsien, to be with other tracts 
organized into an international settlement if >ossible, but if not 
then at the proper time whenever it may legally be done to be oc- 

C Q 

cupied as a United States concession." 

It was too much to hope that any of the Powers which once 
got hold of territory would let it slip out of its grip. As he re- 
alized the attempt of rendering the settlements in Tien Tsien inter- 
national was impossible, Mr. Conger telegraphed the Department of 
State urging that it would be advantageous to the United States in 
many ways to have an American concession at the port. Secretary hay 
was fully in accord with his view and instructed him to make a de- 
mand upon the Chinese government for the consideration of the rights 
of the United States to a concession there. When he brought up the 
question of retrocession of the land before the Chinese government 
troubles arose. The difficulties were not from the Chinese but from 
some foreign concerns which were deadly adverse to the restoration 
of the land to the United States. The Chinese government offered as 

Conger to Rogsdale, For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 51. 
For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 51. 


a compromise a larger tract of land down the ..'eh River. Mr. Conger 
refused to accept the offer but insisted upon the restoration of the 
old United States concession. He reported to Hay that "Before the 
affair is concluded we shall hear some strenuous German opposition'.' M 
As Hay did not wish that the Chinese policy of the United States 
should deviate even slightly from its traditional and nuwly re- 
affirmed policy - the maintenance of Chinese territorial integrity 

he replied, it seems undesirable to press the matter further 


at present". Thus the United States remained a landless power in 

When the "grab game n was played by the Powers in Tien Tsier 

the peace negotiations dragged along in Peking. As Mr. Conger was 


allowed leave of absence from his post, Mr. Rockhill succeeded him 

as representative of the American government in the negotiation. He 

acted independently but harmoniously in the concert of the Powers 

and exerted a salutary influence in the course of moderation, human - 

ity, and justice. Like Mr. Conger he tried with vigor and pru- 
dence to check any measure that might "cripple or impede the ability 
of China in the maintenance of a stable government and its terri- 
torial integrity"^ They strove to control the action of their 


Conger to Hay, For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, pp.55, 56 
31 Hay to Conger, Ilov. 27, 1901, For. Rel. of the U.S., 

1901, pp. 55, 59 


" W. W Rockhill was appointed commissioner to China 
June 27 , 1900 



33 Rockhill's report to . ay, For . Eel. of the U. S. , 1901, 

Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 432. 

colleagues to that end bo that the "open door" policy might not be 

placed in peril. 36 

The most complicated question of the peace terms was that 

of indemnity. It involved two phases, the amount of the indemnities 

and the manner of paying them, both requiring serious consideration. 

These questions were settled with difficulty and after much delay. 

The indemnities were to be paid in a lump sum and the sum total 

amounted to 45,000,000 taels. The claim of the United States was 

the lowest, being 32,939,055 taels equivalent to $24,168,367. The 

actual losses and military expenses aggregated about ^11,000,000. 

In 1908 Congress passed a bill authorizing the ?resident to modify 

the indemnity and to remit the surplus to China as "an act of 

fri endship" 3 ^ The remission began on the 1st day of January of 

1909. The Chinese government has since then used the money thus 
returned to send Chinese young men to study in American colleges. 

The negotiations of ten weary months ultimately reached 
a conclusion. The final protocol contained twelve articles which 
may be grouped under four headings as follows: (1) preventive 
measures against the reoccurrence of anti-foreign movements, (2) 
the punishment of the leaders of the Boxer movement, (3) the indem- 
nification and (4) improvement of diplomatic and commercial rela- 
tions between China and the Powers. The protocol or peace agreement 

Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 4.32. 

36 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1908, p. 4. 

37 ibid p. 72. 


was 3igned by the diplomatic corps and the Chinese plenipotentiaries 
at Peking on September 7, 1901. The Powers agreed upon the evacu- 
ation of the capital. The American troops were the first to with- 
draw from the city and those of the other Powers remained a few 
months after the withdrawal of the United States troops. 

One of the important results of the Boxer uprising was 
the occupation of Manchuria by the Russians. On the 5th of August, 
1900, they seized the treaty port of iTiu-Chwang and placed it under 
the civil administration of Russian authorities. They garrisoned 
some fifty points in the three eastern provinces. The Russian 
government announced to the other Powers late in August that the 
military occupation of Manchuria was temporary and that as soon as 
order in the region was attained, "Russia would not fail to with- 
draw her troops from Chinese territory, provided that the action 

of the other powers does not place any obstacle in the way of such 
3 8 

a measure". The announcement served the purpose of allaying the 
apprehensions of the other Powers but it committed the Russian govern 
ment to the evacuation of Manchuria. It became a diplomatic question 
in the far East during the period from the Boxer insurrection to 
the Russo-Japanese War. 

Before taking up the diplomatic complications involved 
in this question let us discuss the Anglo-German agreement of which 
the main aim was to hold Russia's territorial designs on northern 
China in check. The agreement was signed by the contracting parties 
on the 16th of October, 1900. The second article of the agreement 
reads: "The Imperial German Government and Fer Britainic Majesty's 


Parliamentary Papers on China, No.l, 1900. 


Government will not on their part make use of the present compli- 
cation (Boxer Uprising) 39 to obtain for themselves any territorial 
advantages in Chinese dominions and will direct their policy toward 
maintaining undiminished the territorial condition of the Chinese 
Empire." 40 

This agreement strengthened Hay's policy newly reaffirmed 
in the note of July 3, but it was a blow to Russian ambition in 
China. Moreover it supported the view of the American government 
as to the opposition to any plan which contemplated the prolonged 
occupation of any portion of China. 41 

But the agreement and announcement were to Russia nothing 
more than "scraps of paper". She interpreted the doctrine of con- 
certed action as not applying to her action in Manchuria. According- 
ly she appeared on the one hand to be eager for co-operation with 
the other Powers in sending the expedition to Peking and in peace 
negotiations but on the other hand she acted independently in the 
three eastern provinces. She steadily worked for the permanent 
occupation of these provinces and tried to exclude other nations 
by various concessions which she extracted from the Chinese govern- 
ment in the years 1901 and 1902. In taking steps toward this end 
she met with decided opposition from Japan, Great Britain, and the 
United states. The protests of the former two Powers do not concern 

39 Inserted by the writer of this thesis. 

40 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 354. 

41 Fay to Rockhill. For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 260. 


us directly, let us notice how Secretary Hay proceeded. 

In February, 1902, Hay addressed identical notes to eleven 
powers declaring 

"Any agreement by which China cedes to any corporation or 
company the exclusive right and privilege of opening mines, estab- 
lishing railroads, or in any other way industrially developing 
Manchuria can but be viewed with the gravest concern by the govern- 
ment of the United States of America. It constitutes a monopoly, 
which is a distinct breach of the stipulations of treaties con- 
cluded between China and foreign powers, and thereby seriously 
affects the rights of American citizens; it restricts their right- 
ful trade and exposes it to being discriminated against, interfered 
with, or otherwise jeopardized, and strongly tends towards perman- 
ently impairing the sovereign rights of China in this part of the 
Empire, and seriously interferes with her ability to meet her in- 
ternational obligations. Furthermore such concessions on the 
part of china will undoubtedly be followed by demands from other 
powers for similar and equal exclusive advantages in other parts 
of the Chinese Empire, and the inevitable result must be the com- 
plete wreck of the policy of absolute equality of treatment of all 
nations in regard to trade, navigation, and commerce within the 
confines of the Empire. 

M 0n the other hand, the attainment by one power of such 
exclusive privileges for a commercial organization of its nation- 
ality conflicts with the assurances, repeatedly conveyed to this 
government by the imperial Russian ministry of foreign affairs of 
the imperial government's intention to follow the policy of the 



open door in China, as advocated by the government of the United 
States and accepted by all the treaty powers having commercial 
interests in the Empire. 

M It is for these reasons t^at the government of the United 

States submits the above to the earnest consideration of 

the imperial governments of China and Russia, confident that they 
will give due weight to its importance and adopt such measures as 
will relieve that just and natural anxiety of the United States." 42 

The Russian government tried to evade this by giving the 
American government the assurance that international rights would 
be respected, wowever it was compelled to change its attitude by 
the formation of the Anglo- Japanese Alliance. The object of that 
alliance was to protect the interests of the contracting parties 
in China and Korea by means of maintaining the territorial integrity 
of the two nations. The Russian government did not fail to see that 
there were not a few obstacles in the way of its plan in Manchuria 
and made an agreement with the Chinese government to carry out the 
evacuation of the three eastern provinces in the following manner: 
within six months after the signature of the agreement the Russians 
were to evacuate the south-western portion of the province of 
Mukden up to the Liao River; within the following six months, 
the remainder of Mukden and the province of Kiren; and within the 
six months following the second withdrawal all the Russian troops 
were to leave the province of Fielung Chang. 

42 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1902, p. 926. 


In spite of this agreement, the Russian government would 
not carry out the evacuation without compensation. When the date 
for the first withdrawal came, it called back the soldiers from 
their stations and distributed them along the railway lines as guards 
In April, 1903, it made demands upon the Chinese government. The 
most important demands were: firstly, in Manchuria no new treaty 
ports were to be opened; secondly, no territory in that region was 
to be alienated to any other power; and thirdly, no new consuls 
without previous consent of the Russian government should be ad- 
mitted. 43 But these demands were rejected by the Chinese govern- 
ment because the American and British governments warned the latter 
of the danger of accepting them. 

In September, 1903, the Russian minister at Peking ap- 
proached the Chinese government with the information that Russia 
would carry out the final evacuation if China would agree upon these 
conditions: no part of Manchuria was to be alienated to the other 
powers; no concession would be made to England without equivalent 
provisions for Russia; the telegraph lines from Port Arthur and 
Niu chwang to Mukden should be left in Russian hands; and there 
should be no increase in the import tariff on goods entering Man- 
churia by rail. All these stringent measures for closing Manchuria 
against the economic enterprise of all foreigners were in direct 
opposition to the principles laid down by Fay. 

The persistent diplomat could not be beaten by such 
measures. He exerted efforts to put through a treaty of commerce 

° Conger to Fay, April 23, 1903, For. Rel. of the U. S. , 
1903, pp. 53, 54. 


with China. He thought it necessary to open ports in Manchuria to 
foreign trade in order to beat Russia's policy of exclusion. The 
treaty of commerce between the United States and China was signed 
on October 8th , 1903. Its important provisions were: (1) the 
Chinese government itself agreed to open Mukden, and Antung as places 
for international residence and trade (Art. XV); (2) citizens of the 
United states should have the right to carry on in Chinese territory 
mining operations and other necessary business relating thereto 
(Art. VIII); and (3) missionary societies of the United States should 
be permitted to rent and lease in perpetuity, as the property of such 
societies, building or land in all parts of the Empire for mission- 
ary purposes (Art. XII). 44 

When the date 45 for final evacuation came the Russians 
were still in occupation of the larger part of Manchuria with the 
exception of the region outside the Liao River and still in control 
of Niu Chwang. By the end of October they reoccupied Mukden. It 
was estimated that the Russian soldiers then in Manchuria amounted 
to 45,000 46 The Russian government showed no intention whatever, 
to carry out the provisions of the agreement. It became increasing- 
ly evident that the Russians would not evacuate Manchuria unless 
they were driven out. 

Now Japan demanded that Russia should live up to her 

44 For the text of the treaty see For. Rel. of the U.S., 
1903, pp. 91, 99. 

45 Oct. 8, 1903. 

Fornbeck, Contemporary Politics in the Far i.ast, p. 250. 


promise. It was not because the Japanese government stood for in- 
ternational justice but because the occupation of Llanchuria by the 
Russians was a menace to Japan *s safety. Furthermore Japan bad in- 
terests in Korea conflicting with those of the Russians therein. 

In 1896 the Japanese government proposed to the Russian government 

4 7 

the partition of Korea, but the proposal was refused. The Rus- 
sians established a barrier in north Korea against Japanese politi- 
cal and commercial expansion. The Japanese government had forborne 
for a few years. since the conclusion of the Anglo- Japanese alli- 
ance it was backed up by the British government and thus was in a 
position to reckon with the Russians. It sent the Russian govern- 
ment a series of proposals as regards t>»e mutual recognition of 
their respective spheres of influence in Manchuria and in Korea. 
The Russian government refused to come to an understanding with the 
Japanese government. The latter thereupon broke off diplomatic re- 
lations and ordered its fleet to attack Port Arthur on February 8, 
1904. On the next day the two countries declared war. 

The war, known as the Russo-Japanese War, from the be- 
ginning to the end was fought on the Chinese territory which was 
rendered by the Russian occupation into a state of "double or am- 
biguous sovereignty" 48 The problem of maintaining the neutrality 
and integrity of China became a thorny subject confronting the 
diplomats of the world, especially Secretary Hay. He adhered to 

47 Russian Official History of the Russo-Japanese War 
cited in Ross, Russo-Japanese War, Vol. I, p. 22. 

48 Hershey, International Law and Diplomacy of Russo- 
Japanese War, p. 250. 


his policy of the maintenance of the territorial integrity of China. 
Fe defended it during these troublous times with a view of preserv- 
ing the integrity and neutrality of China proper and of limiting 
the area of hostilities. On February 10, 1904, he sent instructions 
to American representatives at the courts of Russia, China and Japan 
The note reads thus: 

"You will express to ministers of foregin affairs the 
earnest desire of this government of the United States that in the 
course of the military operations which have begun between Russia 
and Japan the neutrality of China and in all practicable ways her 
administrative entity shall be respected by both parties, and that 
the area of hostilities shall be localized and limited as much as 
possible so that undue excitement and disturbance of the Chinese 
people may be prevented and the least possible loss to commerce 
and peaceful intercourse of the world may be occasioned. 

At the same time Mr. Hay through the instrumentality of 
American representatives communicated his ideas to ten European 
Powers and invited their concurrence. With the exception of Spain, 
all the Powers gave favorable replies. The three countries con- 
cerned, Russia, Japan and China also accepted the principles. 

japan accepted the proposals of the United States with 
the reservation that "so long as Russia, making a similar engagement* 
fulfills in good faith the terms and conditions of such engagement." 50 

For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1904, p. 2. 
ibid p. 2. 


The acceptance of the proposals by the Russian government was made 
upon these conditions: (1) neutralization in no case was to be ex- 
tended to Manchuria; (2) China should observe strict neutrality; 


(5) Japan should loyally observe the engagement. All the reserva- 
tions made by the belligerents served as loop-holes by means of 
which they later escaped from their obligations. 

As the war went on Japan won victory after victory over 
Russia by land and sea. It seemed there was no hope for Russia to 
retrieve the lose she suffered and furthermore a rebellion threatened 
her at home. On the other hand Japan was on the point of exhaustion 
though she tried hard to conceal it. At this psychological moment 
President Roosevelt approached the belligerents with proposal for 
peace and the proposal was heartily accepted by them. Negotiations 
were conducted in America and were closed by the Portsmouth treaty 
which was signed on September 5, 1905. 

The treaty provided for (1) the transfer of Russia^ 
rights in Liao Tung peninsula to Japan, (2) the cession of the 
southern section of the Manchuria Railway to Japan, and (3) the 
withdrawal of the Russian and the Japanese troops by their respective 
governments from Manchuria but the maintenance by them of railway 
guards. As regards the open door policy, it provided specifically 
that neither Japan nor Russia should obstruct "any general measures 
common to all countries which China may take for the development of 
commerce and industry of Manchuria". In addition Russia declared 

51 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1904, p. 2. 

52 See Treaty of Peace between Russia and Japan, cited in 
Millard, Our Eastern Question, appendix C. 


that she *ad "not in Manchuria any territorial advantages or prefer- 
ential or exclusive concessions in impairment of Chinese sovereignty 
or inconsistent with the principle of equal opportunity?. 53 

Before the conclusion of the Portsmouth treaty a sort of 
apprehension had existed among the Powers other than the belligerent 
that in the eventual negotiation for peace between Russia and Japan, 
claim might have been made for the concession of Chinese territory 
to the neutral powers. 54 Secretary way communicated to the Powers 
on January 13, 1905, notes declaring: 

"The United States had repeatedly made its position well 
known and has been gratified at the cordial welcome accorded to its 
efforts to strengthen and perpetuate the broad principal policy of 
maintaining the integrity of China and the open door in the Orient 
whereby equality of commercial opportunity and accesses shall be 
enjoyed by all nations. Folding these views the United States dis- 
claims any thought of reserved territorial rights or control in 
the Chinese Empire, and it is deemed fitting to make this purpose 
frankly known and to remove all apprehension on this scare so far 

as concerns the policy of this nation 1,55 All the Powers gave 

favorable replies to the American government, stating that they 
would adhere to the policy of the territorial integrity of China 

53 See Treaty of Peace between Russia and Japan, cited in 
Millard, Our Eastern Question, Appendix C. 

54 Moore, International Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 555. 

55 Ms. Inst. Austria, V.144, cited Moore, International 
Law Digest, Vol. V, pp. 554, 555. 


and the open door in the Orient. 

The circular telegram of January 13, 1905, was the last 
important document that Secretary Fay sent to the Powers reaffirming 
hiB Chinese policy and inviting their adherence to it. Fis sudden 
death on July 1, 1905, prevented him from doing something more for 
his policy in China during the negotiations for peace between Russia 
and japan which was opened two months after his death. Ever since 
the announcement of his policy in the second year of his term as 
secretary, he assumed the leadership in the diplomacy in the Par 
East. He never failed in getting the Powers to declare their inten- 
tion to adhere to his policy although certain Powers never lived up 
to their pledges. In defending his policy during the trying times 
such as the Boxer uprising and the troubles in Manchuria, it is 
safe to say, none of his successors has surpassed him in enthusiasm, 
effort and skill. 



As already pointed out Kay's policy was based upon two 
principles: first, the open door and equal opportunity; and, second, 
the territorial integrity of China. The former implies and is prac- 
tically synonymous to commercial and industrial neutralization, 
while the latter fundamentally means the maintenance of political 
equilibrium in the Chinese Empire. If there is any need for an in- 
ternational policy that can harmonize the interests of the Powers in 
China and that can secure equally favorable conditions under which 
various nations engaged in the Far Eastern trade can compete with 
each other, that policy must contain these two essential principles. 
To promote these purposes, no other policy is better than the Hay 
policy. Its soundness accounted for the fact that the majority of 
the powers readily and sincerely accepted it when announced in 1899. 

Besides this the success of the Lay policy finds its ex- 
planation in the manner in which it was carried out. Simplicity, 
directness, and openness characterized nay's diplomatic procedure. 
At the so-called psychological moment he appealed with his principles 
first to those nations whose policies in China were in accord with 
his. Having gotten favorable replies from them, he then communicated 
his principles, together with the assurances from the Powers, to 
the power which tended to be antagonistic. The latter therefore 
could not help to shape its answer so as to appear advocating the 
policy. Thus Hay succeeded in bringing the Powers concerned to an 

agreement upon his proposal 8 whenever he brought them up before 
various governments. To get support for his policy from the majority 
of the family of nations, so that the rest could not but conform, 
was the key note of his procedure. 

The immediate results of hay's negotiations in 1899 were 
noticeable. In the first place the land-grabbing policy of the 
Powers was held in check. By declaring that they would not expect 
to have exclusive rights in their respective spheres of influence, 
they claimed that they limited the extent of their future demands 
and that they expressed an intention not to interfere thenceforth 
with China's sovereign rights. In the second place the commercial 
world was secured in the enjoyment of all its rights under treaties 
with China. 

During the Boxer uprising hay's policy announced in the 
note of July 3, 1900, served as a guiding principle whereby the 
lowers, except Kussia in Manchuria, agreed to take united action. 
They took concerted action in all measures, such as the relief ex- 
pedition and peace negotiations. This concurrence on the part of 
the Powers saved China from dismemberment. 

The first lustrum of the present century marked a struggle 
between Hay's Chinese policy and Russia's policy in Manchuria. Hay's 
measure to open up Manchuria to the world trade was flatly opposed 
to the policy of exclusion of the Hussian government. Eis protests 
and demonstrations kept it busy with denial and explanation and at 
last exacted from it the convention for the evacuation of ilanchuria. 
Though we can not say that this was solely due to his opposition, 
we are safe to say that it was one of the factors. 


Before 1905 the Russian government was the only opponent 
of the Hay policy but after the Russo-Japanese war the enemy of the 
hay policy increased in number. By the treaty of Portsmouth both 
Japan and Russia gave formal pledges to respect the integrity of 
China and the open door. But none of them lived up to the pledges. 
Russia resumed her oil policy in northern Manchuria while Japan in 
southern Manchuria took up measures as aggressive as that of its 
predecessor. The two governments seemed to have reached an agree- 
ment to break down the Hay principles. 

Secretary Root and his successor Knox were earnest de- 
fenders of the ^ay policy. m 19u8 Rout protested against Russia's 
attempt at establishing her control over Northern Manchuria but in 
vain. When the Russian demands were disclosed in 1909 Knox made an 
equally earnest protest but it was no more effective than that of 
his predecessor. In the next year a British and American syndicate 
secured a concession from the Chinese government to build a rail- 
way, known as the Chin-chow Aigun Railway. Secretary Knox proposed 
to the countries most concerned that the entire railroad system of 
Manchuria should be brought under an international administration 
and for purely commercial purposes. 1 He also communicated this 
idea to Great Britain, Germany and France. 2 His proposal did not 
receive warm support from the three Powers and met with emphatic 
rejection from the Russian and the Japanese governments. Thus the 

1 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1910, p. 234. 


For the correspondence with the ?owers see ibid pp.254, 


attempt at neutralization of Manchurian railways failed. 

The reason why the Japanese government was opposed to this 
arrangement was plain. Uo sooner than the signature of the Ports- 
mouth treaty, Japan extracted from the Chinese government the secret 
Komura treaty by which Japan was to enjoy special privileges in rail- 
way building and other enterprises in southern Manchuria. Later on 
the South Manchuria Railway Company was organized as an instrumental- 
ity of getting hold of all the railways in that quarter of Llanchuria. 
The semi -governmental concern gave special railway rates to Japanese 
traders. Such actions were absolutely antagonistic to the princi- 
ples of equal opportunity and the open door. 

Nineteen years ago hay's declaration together with the 
assurance of the Powers created a political and economical equilib- 
rium in China. It was disturbed by Japan's seizure of Xiao-Chow 
in August, 1914. The Japanese government went so far that in May, 
1917, it declared that there was no obligation on the part of Japan 
to return the place to China. It deliberately violated the prin- 
ciple of the preservation of China's integrity. 

Further still the Japanese government in 1915 pressed 
the famous twenty -one demands under five groups upon the Chinese 
government and forced it to acquiesce to the demands of the first 
four groups. Japan thus secured direct, explicit special privileges 
which are distinctly contradictory to the "equal opportunity". She 
is not yet through with China. Her designs on the latter have been 
increasing from time to time. Taking advantage of the great war, 
she has extended her illegitimate ambition as fully as possible 
while China is struggling for reconstitution and stability. When 

the Lansing-lshii agreement was disclosed last year, apprehension 
existed among the Chinese that Japan might push her way in China 
still farther. This she has attempted to do. Late in last month 
we saw a statement in the Chicago tribune , saying that Japan had 
made severe demands upon China. Since the European V/ar broke out, 
the Japanese government has done what it likes without the slightest 
regard to the hay policy. Nay, it has openly violated the policy, 
initiated by the American government and guaranteed by the leading 
European Powers. 

Is the government of the United States going to let the 
policy fall into obscurity or to try its best to defend it? 

If the United States were an isolated or hermit nation 
in the "/est as it was a century ago, the preservation of the Hay 
policy would mean very little. But it is a world power, a nation 
of foreign trade. Its growth depends upon the maintenance of foreign 
trade. The possibilities lying in trade between it and china are 
certainly great. "China is at the beginning of a commercial develop- 
ment which in its magnitude can not be estimated." if the Americans 
expect to have the Chinese market open to the export trade of the 
United states, they should pay special attention to the hay policy. 
Its downfall means the loss of a good market for American products. 

The United States has developed a consistent policy in 
China and for about a quarter century has pursued it definitely there- 
in as it has followed the Monroe joc trine in South America. A 
policy to a nation is no less important than its sovereignty. The 
government in upholding and defending its foreign policy is under 

the same obligation as in defending the territory. As the United 
States government never fails to maintain the Lonroe joq tri ne , 
there is no reason why it should assume a passive attitude towards 
the Hay policy. If this government will maintain the prestige of 
the United States in the Far East, and the weight of its voice in 
the council of Far Eastern Affairs, it needs scarcely to be told 
that it should do something positive for its Chinese policy. 

Twenty years ago the conflicting policies of the Powers 
in China threatened a collision among them. Fortunately the Hay 
policy upon which the Powers agreed removed the sources of inter- 
national irritation. Russia's departure from the policy destroyed 
the status quo in the Far East and thus led to the Russo-Japanese 
War. Since then the Powers, except Japan, have been trying to 
maintain the balance of power in the extreme East. But during 
recent years Japan has disturbed the political equilibrium and she 
is evidently a menace to the peace of the Far East. If that menace 
is allowed to exist, it is not unlikely that a great war will be 
fought by the Powers in the Orient. 

A readjustment among the Powers in the Far East seems as 
necessary as it is in Europe. It is highly desirable that the ques 
tion of that readjustment will be taken up in the peace conference 
which sooner or later will close the European "tfar . The writer of 
the present thesis is quite convinced that unless it is based upon 
the Eay principles, that readjustment can not restore the political 
and economical equilibrium, which has been totally disturbed by 

Japan, and secure permanent peace to the Far East as well as to the 
world. Would it not he wise if the government of the United States 
in that peace conference should exert its influence in bringing the 
Power 8 to an agreement upon the enforcement of the Hay policy? 


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